Hiker finds abandoned, malnourished bear cub in Henderson County - FOX Carolina 21

Hiker finds abandoned, malnourished bear cub in Henderson County

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Abandoned bear cub. (Source: Toby Jenkins). Abandoned bear cub. (Source: Toby Jenkins).
Abandoned bear cub. (Source: Toby Jenkins). Abandoned bear cub. (Source: Toby Jenkins).
TUXEDO, NC (FOX Carolina) -

A Henderson County hiker found an abandoned and malnourished bear cub on Sunday. 

Toby Jenkins with the NC Wildlife Resources Commission said the hiker left the cub alone at first because it is common for mothers to leave them alone for awhile. The hiker came back, saw the cub wasn't in good shape and called a vet. 

 According to Jenkins, the vet determined the cub was very malnourished and based off blood work, didn't think she had eaten in a couple of days.

Jenkins said his wife, who is licensed to rehabilitate animals, was able to get the cub to drink goat's milk. At first, the cub did not want to eat anything and was lethargic. 

After she was able to drink the milk, the cub was doing better and gained a pound over the next couple of days as her health continued to improve. 

Jenkins said the cub will be transported to Caswell Wildlife Depot, a facility that rehabilitates black bears. He estimates it will be a year or so before she can be released back into the wild. 

Jenkins emphasized that this case is different than most. He said it's very common for animals to "hide" their babies and come back to them later. Most of the time, the animal is not orphaned or abandoned and Jenkins encourages people to wait for the mother to return before reaching out to the NC Wildlife Resources Commission. 

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